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The Secrets She Keeps: Book summary and reviews of The Secrets She Keeps by Michael Robotham

The Secrets She Keeps

A Novel

by Michael Robotham

The Secrets She Keeps by Michael Robotham X
The Secrets She Keeps by Michael Robotham
  • Readers' rating:

  • Published in USA  Jul 2017
    384 pages
    Genre: Thrillers

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About this book

Book Summary

In the bestselling tradition of The Girl on the Train and In a Dark, Dark Wood, from the internationally bestselling author whom Stephen King called "an absolute master" of the psychological thriller, comes a riveting suspense novel about the unlikely friendship between two pregnant women that asks: how far would you go to create the perfect family?

Agatha is pregnant and works part-time stocking shelves at a grocery store in a ritzy London suburb, counting down the days until her baby is due. As the hours of her shifts creep by in increasing discomfort, the one thing she looks forward to at work is catching a glimpse of Meghan, the effortlessly chic customer whose elegant lifestyle dazzles her. Meghan has it all: two perfect children, a handsome husband, a happy marriage, a stylish group of friends, and she writes perfectly droll confessional posts on her popular parenting blog—posts that Agatha reads with devotion each night as she waits for her absent boyfriend, the father of her baby, to maybe return her calls.

When Agatha learns that Meghan is pregnant again, and that their due dates fall within the same month, she finally musters up the courage to speak to her, thrilled that they now have the ordeal of childbearing in common. Little does Meghan know that the mundane exchange she has with a grocery store employee during a hurried afternoon shopping trip is about to change the course of her not-so-perfect life forever…

With its brilliant rendering of the secrets some women hold close and a shocking act that cannot be undone, The Secrets She Keeps delivers a dark and twisted page-turner that is absolutely impossible to put down.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"[An] emotionally charged domestic thriller...Robotham's narrative is intimate and insightful. Brilliantly rendered characters, relentless tension, and numerous plot twists make this a winner." - Publishers Weekly

"Starred Review. With its interestingly imperfect characters and escalating sense of urgency, this novel will keep you reading as fast as you can." - Kirkus Reviews

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Reader Reviews

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Diane S.

The Secrets she keeps
Two young women, pregnant at the same time but a huge difference in their personal lives. Meghan appears to have it all, a loving husband, two small children. Agatha sees her from afar, envies her life because the father of her baby doesn't want to be involved and is now serving in the military. At this point I was thinking I knew exactly where this was going, a common enough theme, predictable, but in this authors capable hands though some of what I thought would happen did, the way it happens is more than just predictable.

I have read this author for quite a long time and I love the way he portrays his characters. They are multifaceted and one can tell that he cares for them. In this one he turns things topsy turvy because the one i should feel sympathetic for is not the one I did. Like a hat trick, he shows people are not ever one thing and that looks and thoughts can be deceiving. What one understand on the surface may not be all of it, always their is more to the story. Takes real talent to do this and this author it in spades.

Cloggie Downunder

a cleverly constructed psychological thriller
The Secrets She Keeps is the fourth stand-alone novel by Australian author, Michael Robotham. Two women from different backgrounds find they have something in common: they are to give birth in a few weeks. For ex-journalist and mummy-blogger Meghan Shaughnessy, it will be her third, and this one is unplanned. Supermarket employee Agatha Fyfle tells Meg it’s her first. Neither, however, is being completely honest, and with good reasons. Meg carries an overwhelming guilt about the baby’s conception; Agatha’s reasons are much darker.

Robotham uses a dual narrative to tell the tale. It soon becomes apparent that Agatha is an unreliable narrator whose her awful childhood is meant to mitigate her actions as an adult, although some of those affected have difficulty seeing it this way. Meg’s emotions are more relatable and certainly her anguish is well-conveyed.

Everyone involved has secrets that hide their very human flaws, not the least of which is self-interest, but as the story races towards the nail-biting conclusion, the behaviour of some characters will surprise the reader. Within the framework of a cleverly constructed psychological thriller, Robotham manages to incorporate child abduction, adultery, child sexual assault and murder. Definitely a page-turner.

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Author Information

Michael Robotham Author Biography

Gold Dagger winning and Edgar short-listed author Michael Robotham was born in Australia in November 1960 and grew up in small country towns that had more dogs than people and more flies than dogs. He escaped in 1979 and became a cadet journalist on an afternoon newspaper in Sydney.

For the next fourteen years he wrote for newspapers and magazines in Australia, Britain and America. As a senior feature writer for the UK's Mail on Sunday he was among the first people to view the letters and diaries of Czar Nicholas II and his wife Empress Alexandra, unearthed in the Moscow State Archives in 1991. He also gained access to Stalin's Hitler files, which had been missing for nearly fifty years until a cleaner stumbled upon a cardboard box that had been misplaced and misfiled.

In 1993 he ...

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